Friday, September 4, 2009

Countdown to UGA-OSU: 1 Day (#1 Branden Smith)

Another preseason has come and gone, and now we get to see the real thing tomorrow afternoon. It was tough for me personally keeping up with the countdown this year, not because my enthusiasm or interest has waned in the least, but just stuff going on elsewhere in my life (getting older sucks sometimes, and I am terrible at prioritizing.) I wanted to post some in-depth predictions on the season and the rest of the SEC, but that didn't happen either.

Incidentally - my prediction for the Dawgs is 9-3. I can't figure out if this is a 10-2 or an 8-4 team, so I'm splitting the difference. It will be an interesting season, maybe more interesting (or perhaps uncertain is the better word) than any we've seen in the past decade. Nobody in the conference save the Gators looks to clearly have more talent than UGA, but this schedule is pretty brutal. Unfortunately, I think one of the losses comes tomorrow in Stillwater. I just don't like the circumstances: traveling to a different environment (it isn't the "hostile" nature of Stillwater than bothers me, its the "newness" of it), season opener (the only opener UGA has played under Richt where it didn't look rusty was the Boise State game), and lots and lots of uncertainty (quarterback, running back, punter, everywhere on defense except tackle.) It doesn't mean I think Oklahoma State is going to challenge for a BCS Title. Nor does it mean I don't think UGA will make some noise in the SEC this year. I just don't think the stars are aligned for the Dawgs tomorrow. Hopefully, I am sorely wrong and everybody I know spends Saturday evening berating me after UGA wins by 3 TDs. Truth be told, I really don't have a clue what's going to happen tomorrow. Not a clue.

Enjoy the season.

#1 Branden Smith, CB
5-11, 175, Atlanta GA (Washington HS), True Freshman

Most recruiting services ranked Smith as the #1 or #2 cornerback prospect in America coming out of Washington High in Atlanta this past year, so by all accounts he might have been the Dawgs' most prized-recruit of the 2009 signing class. As you can imagine, big things are expected this season. Smith is fast, athletic, and while not the biggest cornerback UGA has on the roster, he plays much bigger. He was also a standout wide receiver in high school, which has led many to predict that he could be a secret weapon on offense before his time in Athens is complete.

Depth Chart Analysis: The rumor mill is buzzing that we could see Smith line up on offense tomorrow. One thing is for certain, he'll be in Stillwater tomorrow, and he will be playing. A terrific August has shot him up the depth chart to where he'll be the #2 corner behind Prince Miller, and could see the field in some 3-DB sets. It wouldn't shock me at all if he started some games by the end of the year. He could also see some returns tomorrow, as he's been lining up at kick and punt returner during practice.

Other famous #1s in UGA history: WR Chuck Jones, WR Andre Hastings, WR Reggie Brown


Otto said...

Thanks and good job JJ.
I can't believe another season is upon us. I have been worried about this game all spring and summer. For some reason the closer it gets to kickoff the better I feel about it.....which is scary. I think the hype, expectations and overall horses on this UGA team are going to overwhelm OSU. Last night showed that offenses struggle early....that is not good for OSU. It is alot easier to look good early on if you can run it between the tackles.....which I assume UGA should be able to do. Did the Ducks really hang half a hundred on OSU in the bowl

Anonymous said...

No number 1 love for MoMass?

JJ said...

Clearly an oversight on my part - thanks for the reminder. Especially with MoMass about to possibly start in his first NFL season.